I'm done with collecting, and I've moved on to purging. Recently I came across an article on de-cluttering written by Leo Babauta, and he summed up the art of de-cluttering very nicely:
1. Identify what is most important to you
2. Eliminate everything else
Sounds simple, right?
Well, Leo Babauta also says you must be merciless.
And that's been very hard for me because I have a very strong, very strange, and very irrational attachment to some of my things, and while that may be understandable with family treasures, much of what I have accumulated over the years is far from family treasure, most are just 'trash treasures' (items I've picked from the garbage)! But for me, there was instantaneous bonding with these trash treasures, and at once they became 'dear-to-my-heart' items. So I had to summon up a little of my sister Diane (when cleaning out the house my parents were living in and getting them ready for a big move years ago, Diane would pick up an item and in a split second she would decide if it stayed or if it went. And I remember clearly her words as she tossed things, "This has served it's purpose"), so now my motto is 'this has served it's purpose and it's time for it to move on'.
I've heard it's hard to stop collecting. I read that a collector takes no pleasure in just looking at things, the pleasure comes from acquiring things. I'm hoping that's not true, because as much as I don't want to give up looking or 'window shopping', I certainly don't want things cluttering up my house again! I'm hoping I go from an 'acquirer' to an 'admirer', and I'm hoping I have the will to pass things by without having the need to make them my own, or the need to rescue them and give them new life.
I know I'm always going to love 'things', but I also know that I can't have it all, and really, I think I'm at a point in my life where I don't want it all anymore.
Also, I recently read that we should use good stewardship in the space that God Has Provided for us, and I have not been using good stewardship at all in the space He Has Provided for me! So I am on a quest to purge, and I am on a quest to maximize efficiency by living with less. And in the process I am becoming so much more thankful.
So far we've gone through the front room, the back room, the kitchen, and some boxes in the basement, and Katie has gone through some of Jayden's toys too. And with only a fraction of the elimination done, already it feels good. I know it will takes months and months before I get through almost thirty years of accumulation, but I can almost see the light at the end of the tunnel now.
Although I want to de-clutter my surroundings and live a more simple lifestyle, I have no desire to live a spartan lifestyle. So I will be hanging onto a few treasures, but I'm hoping I will pare down to a very few treasures, and I'm hoping very soon that my massive accumulations and I will see a parting of the ways.
On a side note, I've seen a very interesting study in human behavior through de-cluttering. For a few weeks we had "FREE" signs out, I was just hoping that people would stop by, love my things and want to adopt them, take them for nothing, no cash exchange, everything free. But very few people took anything.
Then Ray decided to have a yard sale, and sell everything cheap, he and the girls set up the tables, he put a few 'YARD SALE' signs up around the neighborhood, and things sold like hotcakes!
What's up with that? I guess people like to feel that they got a bargain , but I guess they feel that "free" isn't a bargain? I don't get it.
Also, some happy news to report ~ our oldest son Brian and his girlfriend Flora got engaged! No date set yet, but I'll keep you posted!
5 weeks ago